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Global Markets Plummet As Coronavirus Spreads In Europe, South Korea And Middle East

Neer Varshney

Markets in Asia and the European Union dropped on Monday as fears over the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) spreading internationally continued to rise.

Asia Markets

China has relaxed the restrictions imposed in Wuhan as the number of reported cases in the country, according to state-run Xinhua News Agency. Combined with the fact that the country's central bank has been making constant efforts at flushing in more cash into the economy, the stock market continues to see limited impact compared to the initial sell-off seen immediately as the markets opened after the extended Lunar New Year holiday.

Shanghai Composite closed 0.28% lower at 3,031.23 on Monday and Shenzhen Component closed 1.23% higher at 11,772.38.

Hong Kong, where five more cases of the coronavirus were confirmed to bring the total at 79 cases, according to the South China Morning Post, saw the benchmark Hang Seng Index dip 1.79% at 26,820.88.

Confirmed cases of the COVID-19 skyrocketed in South Korea to 833 as at least 231 new cases were reported on Monday alone. The country's Daegu city is under a virtual lockdown as the million residents are advised by the government undergo a voluntary quarantine and multiple airlines cancelled all flights to and from the city for at least a month, Reuters reported.

South Korea's benchmark index KOSPI was down a whopping 3.87% at 2,079.04. Elsewhere in Singapore, the Straits Times Index traded 1.2% lower at 3,144.28.

Markets in India, where President Donald Trump is currently on a three-day visit also saw the impact of the virus, even as overall reported cases remain low. NIFTY 50 was down 1.77% and SENSEX dropped 1.65% by press time.

The coronavirus has also found its roots in middle eastern countries, with Kuwait confirming three cases, and Bahrain and Afghanistan both confirming their first.

See Also: Gold Surges To 7-Year High As Coronavirus Cases Rise Internationally

EU Markets

Markets in the EU responded to the potential financial risks stemming from the coronavirus as it takes hold in Italy.

Italy has confirmed at least 152 cases of the coronavirus with four reported deaths, giving fears to the fact that the coronavirus could spread to the rest of the EU countries. The Venice carnival, otherwise set to end on Tuesday, was cut short Sunday as the government introduced "urgent measures" to tackle the spread of the coronavirus in the country. CNBC reported Austria has halted all train services with Italy with fears that a passenger on board one of the trains from Italy was carrying the virus.

Italy's benchmark FTSE MIB index was down 4.2% at 23,733.75 in early trade at press time. Austria's Austrian Traded Index was down 3.55% at 3,037.66.

In neighboring France, the market was down 3.32% at 5,830.76, as the country against a mass-scale spread of the life-threatening virus. Germany's DAX Performance index was down 3.68% at 13,087.82.

The United Kingdom, where four new cases were confirmed from the people who arrived after the quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise in Japan, saw its benchmark FTSE 100 index drop 3.2% at 7,167.24.

The United Kingdom, where four new cases were confirmed from the people who arrived after the quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise in Japan, saw its benchmark FTSE 100 index drop 3.2% at 7,167.24.

US Futures

U.S. stock futures dropped significantly, responding to the global surge in the cases, pointing to a lower open in the regular session when the markets kickstart this week a few hours later.

Spot gold and gold futures surged earlier in the day. Dow Jones futures were down 2.22% at 28,337. Nasdaq 100 futures traded 2.96% lower at 9,178.50. S&P 500 futures dropped 2.33% at 3,261.50.

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